Wednesday, March 24 2004
There's a difference between sticking to the formula and adhering to it as dogma. Super Metroid greatly expanded the breadth and depth of both the original setting and Samus herself.
Wednesday, March 10 2004
It seems as though Harry winks and nods at the camera during every cutscene, as if he knows he's in a game and not on some dangerous expedition. Moments like that really pull you out of what should be an immersive experience.
While artists and programmers continue to push the limits on graphics, sound, level design, and animation, video game writing is lagging far behind in terms of innovation.
Electronic Arts has always given a true feeling of insane speed in these games, if nothing else.
From the first minute of the opening cinematic, when our protagonist chases down a plane on foot and then jumps on to catch it, you know that any notion of 'realism' will be taking a back seat in this game.
Wednesday, February 25 2004
You won't find spectacularly original gameplay here, but in a game where you actually get to drive Homer's dream car, it's hard to complain.
So many games these days feature the authorities often portrayed as the bad guys as much as the criminals are. And I suppose the same could be said for this title.
It's a little like each person holding a separate piece of a treasure map -- the best way to success is for everyone to let each other know what's going on.
Character development in this kind of 'role-playing' game is not so much found in the skills and abilities of the characters, but largely occurs through looting and accruing more weapons and armor.
The situation feels so familiar, one almost expects Osama bin Laden's bearded mug to flash across the floating Big Brother video screens that pervade Hillys.
Wednesday, February 11 2004
hack reminds us that we live in worlds within worlds in a newly unfolding virtual culture, but that culture is not separate from reality -- it is a part of our reality.
While encouraging taunting, through bonus points and rewards, the game seems to police this practice as well.
It's no longer about style vs. substance; in this game, style is substance.
Unlike its predecessors, Manhunt has little to do with story, but instead is driven by your need to kill.
Where would Mario and Luigi be if it weren't for that stupid ape stealing away the plumber's beloved girlfriend all those years ago?
The ports of both the NES games are flawless -- including all of the original flaws.
Ambivalent morality lies at the heart of what makes the Legacy of Kain series such a sophisticated work of video game art.
Tuesday, January 27 2004
It's time to head back to the '70s once more and dig up an old artifact that any gamer born in the '80s or after probably won't recall too well.
What one has to remember is that wrestling is and always has been entertainment, but what the owners, bookers, and stars never took into account was the way in which many fans would eventually wrap their lives around the very business.
While gamers have for years played historical re-enactment of former events through board games like 'Axis and Allies' and 'Three Days of Gettysburg', this is a strange time in the development of interactive 'historical' reconstruction.